There haven’t been very many moments in my life where a celebrity death really stopped me dead in my tracks. I watched my father pause when Kurt Cobain & Jerry Garcia died. In fact, I think Jerry’s death might have been the first time I can recall seeing my father cry. Guess now it’s my turn to have someone’s iconic lifetime effect me. Yes, I am talking about Michael Jackson.
On June 25th, 2009 Michael Jackson drew his last breathe. MJ has been a huge part of my life and I never gave up on the musical genius. No matter how “weird” people claimed him to be I continued to support his every move. Lets start in my childhood…
Some of my first memories involve a birthday party for Clifford Blieden where we went to, I believe, a Chili’s Restaurant and found ourselves in front of our first Michael Jackson impersonator. Of course, I was young enough to believe it was actually MJ at that time. Not far after that I’d spend many afternoons after school watching Moonwalker. I’m pretty sure the VHS is still at my father’s house in Houston. Soon CDs would become the new format and my brother would give me my first compact disc. What was it? Michael Jackson – Dangerous.
Then just a couple years back I had a conversation with my friend, Ashleigh, about how we don’t understand how people can disregard his musical credibility for some of his personal actions. To me Michael Jackson’s personal life was as important to me as Bill Clinton’s. It’s not my business and I still think they are both great individuals who did a lot for this country we live in. I was very happy that day to discover I wasn’t alone in my support of the King of Pop.
Anyway, I could go on about this all day, but the point is how much Michael Jackson’s impact on music will be missed. What artists do we have today that we will still be talking about and blasting loudly from our cars in 30 years?
Please take a moment to honor the King of Pop, Michael Jackson, in your own way today. And if you’re in LA, join me for the Viper Room’s Michael Jackson memorial on July 1st. It’s free.